It's a decade this month since La Crescenta resident Frank Hoogenhuizen discovered the bodies of Blaine Talmo Jr., 14, of La Crescenta, and Christopher McCulloch, 13, of La Cañada Flintridge, but time has done nothing to ease the memory.
Hoogenhuizen and his wife, Grace, spent July 23, 2000, inside, avoiding the sweltering summer heat. At 8 p.m. he ventured into the yard, glanced over his back wall and saw two neighborhood boys lying on the playground blacktop at Valley View Elementary School, which abuts his property.
"I said, 'Hey guys, it's getting dark. Are you asleep?" Hoogenhuizen recalled.
What he saw after looking closer made him pause — there was a large rock pressed up against one of the boy's heads, which was badly discolored. The other boy was splayed under the playground slide. A 12-foot-long bench rested on top of him, one of the metal legs across his throat.